Oracle takes on Microsoft, Google with Cloud Office
IDG News Service - Oracle on Wednesday announced the availability of Cloud Office 1.0, a Web-based productivity suite that is set to give online applications from Microsoft and Google a fresh dose of competition.
Cloud Office is integrated with the on-premises Oracle Open Office, of which version 3.3 was also announced Wednesday.
Like Open Office, Cloud Office is based on ODF (Open Document Format). It provides a set of spreadsheet, text and presentation applications and is compatible with Microsoft Office, according to Oracle.
Customers can use Cloud Office to collaborate on documents over the Web as well as access them on mobile devices, Oracle said. Information on supported mobile devices wasn't immediately available.
Cloud Office stands ready for "enterprise and carrier-grade deployment" thanks to its "Web-scale" SaaS (software as a service) architecture, but is available in on-premises form as well, Oracle said.
It will be sold to business users as Cloud Office Professional Edition. Telcos and ISPs can offer their customers Cloud Office in Home, Standard and Professional Editions, according to an Oracle presentation.
A perpetual license for Professional Edition costs $90, plus 22% annual maintenance fees. Cloud Office Standard Edition will cost $40 per user when sold through a telco or ISP, with support acquired through the provider. Home Edition is not currently available, according to an Oracle spokeswoman.
Cloud Office is also available via subscription at $40 per user per year for Professional Edition and $20 per user per year for Standard Edition, the spokeswoman said.
Cloud Office's cost could be key to its success against incumbent offerings like Google Apps for Business, which costs $50 per user per year.
While Oracle has a long way to go in catching up to competing office suites, it is hoping to close the gap by positioning its products as more flexible and open alternatives.
Open Office 3.3 Standard Edition costs $49.95 per user and is meant for companies with one to 99 employees. The Enterprise Edition, which includes many more tools, connectors and supported platforms, costs $90 per user with a minimum of 100 users, although volume pricing is available.
But interoperability with Office comes at an additional price. Earlier this year, Oracle imposed a $90 per user fee on an ODF plug-in that enables the sharing of files between Open Office and Microsoft Office. The plug-in had been available at no charge under Sun's ownership.
Still, Oracle maintains customers can reduce their office productivity license costs by up to a factor of five by using Open Office.
Oracle has faced scrutiny this year from backers of OpenOffice.org, the open-source version of Open Office, with some fearing the company would stop supporting the effort.
A number of OpenOffice.org developers recently formed an offshoot project, LibreOffice. Oracle later publicly reaffirmed its commitment to OpenOffice.org.
Oracle gave no indications in Wednesday's announcement that Cloud Office will also be released as open source.
- Fast and Furious: How SAS VA Helps IT Deliver BI Platform Read this whitepaper to learn more about the benefits of self-service BI to make business critical decisions.
- API Playbook: Drive API Adoption Through Developer Engagement Learn the best practices of how to engage developers, whether your goal is to attract external developers to your public APIs or improve...
- Leverage the Power of APIs to Turbocharge Your Mobile Strategy: 7 Steps to a Successful API Program In this guide, Intel® Services-which offers industry-leading API management solutions for over 150 top enterprises, including Best Buy, Netflix, Expedia, ESPN, and The...
- IDG Research Survey: Are you Paying Too Much for Your NMS? Feel like you're paying too much for network monitoring? You're not alone. This survey brief summarizes findings from research recently fielded by IDG...
- Live Webcast Master the Changing SAP Landscape with Performance Management SAP landscapes are not getting simpler. Gradually, business processes that used to be contained on a single SAP system now involve a range...
- API Management: The Key to Improving the Consumer Travel Experience Join PhoCusWright's Senior Technology Analyst, Norm Rose, as he shares his insights on how travel suppliers and intermediaries can improve industry data flow...
- Tips to Simplify Database Administration and Development Make your job easier while getting the most from the leading productivity tool for database professionals. Learn tips from Dell Software's Oracle® ACE,... All Applications White Papers | Webcasts